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3 December 2021

News Media Bargaining Code delivering for regional Australia

Note

Joint media release with
The Hon Paul Fletcher MP
Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts

The Morrison Government has today welcomed the announcement of more than 50 new ABC journalists working in communities across regional Australia following deals struck with Facebook and Google.

The Morrison Government’s world-leading News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code introduced in February addresses the bargaining power imbalance between news media businesses and digital platforms. Importantly, the code encourages parties to undertake commercial negotiations outside the Code.

The Government is pleased to see progress by both Google and Facebook in reaching commercial arrangements with Australian news media businesses. Since February, Google and Facebook have collectively entered into commercial agreements with 30 news organisations.

The ABC’s ability to deliver news and information to more Australians across regional Australia is an important outcome of the Code.

The revenue from the deals with Facebook and Google will now go toward increasing the ABC’s investment in regional and rural journalism across Australia. Specifically, the ABC will boost the number of regional journalists by around 10 per cent, with the first set of journalists placed in more than 20 locations starting from this week.

The Morrison Government continues to support public interest journalism, and public broadcasting, in Australia reflecting the importance of a diverse and well-resourced news media sector to our democracy and the Australian people.